Weight Loss Myths – Busted!

Besides asking us pointblank every time she sees us if we’ve eaten breakfast (and us invariably shooting back the question “Does coffee count?”), Richelle Melde, owner of Ultimate Body Boot Camp is our ultimate get-fit motivator. Here she debunks the weight loss myths keeping us from shedding those extra pounds and keeping healthy.

We have all heard (and done!) the latest fad diet only to end up right where we started. Find what to believe and what NOT to believe right here!

1. If I drastically cut calories, I’ll lose weight faster. When you take your caloric intake down too low, you are actually sending your body into starvation mode. Your body wants to maintain your weight when it “thinks” you are starving; therefore, your metabolism will actually slow down and you may not lose weight.

2. The stricter the diet, the better it will work. The stricter a diet is — completely eliminating entire food groups; eating just one food (e.g., cabbage soup) — the less effective it will be in the end. You’ll get tired of the allowed food and when you feel really deprived, you’re likely to call it quits altogether. By treating yourself to your old favorites now and again, you’ll stay motivated and you’ll be less likely to give in to a binge. Just make sure you get back on track after your treat. Moderation is the key to successful, long-term weight loss.

3. I shouldn’t eat between meals. On the contrary, eating a small, healthful snack between meals will help keep your blood sugar at an even keel and keep your metabolism going strong. You’ll also avoid getting too hungry so you don’t over-eat at your next meal.

4. Fat is bad. Everybody needs to include some fat in their diet. We need it; plus, it makes dishes more satisfying and palatable. Some fats are even good for you, like omega-3 fatty acids, which are found predominantly in fish and shellfish.

5. Skipping meals will help me lose weight. On the contrary, skipping meals may actually cause you to gain weight! Your metabolism plummets and you get over-hungry. Plus, you may be under-shooting your daily calorie requirement which will backfire on you. That’s why eating the meal we skip most, breakfast, can actually help us lose weight.

6. Dairy is a “don’t” on healthy diets. With non- and low-fat varieties of most dairy products on the market, working dairy into your diet can be a “do”. Women in particular can benefit from the calcium dairy products provide. Not to mention the fact that research has shown eating enough calcium can give our weight loss efforts a boost.

7. It all boils down to willpower. Yes, willpower may be a factor when it comes to how we respond to cravings, but a lot more factors can impact our weight, including genetics, culture, home environment, activity level and health issues. The good news is eating a healthy diet and exercising can help you overcome these influences.

8. Drinking a lot of water can help me lose weight. Drinking water in and of itself will not lead to weight loss. Of course, water is key to a healthy lifestyle and drinking enough has tons of benefits; but when people lose weight due to drinking water, it’s most likely because they’re substituting if for high-calorie juices and sodas. Water will help flush out toxins and keep the body hydrated for maximum efficiency as well.

For questions about nutrition and weight loss support, contact Richelle Melde at Ultimate Body Boot Camp (but be sure you’ve eaten breakfast before you call!).

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